The official July 2021 opening of the Novi Dorćol complex in Belgrade, Serbia is the first phase of constructing a remarkable and successful renewal of a previously derelict industrial quarter. The Penetron System was used to ensure a durable and waterproof concrete structure for the underground parking garage.
Located at the confluence of the Sava and Danube Rivers, Belgrade is Serbia’s capital and has almost 1.7 million people living in the metropolitan area of the city - a quarter of the country’s total population.
The $180 million Novi Dorćol mixed-use community was designed and financed by Deka Inženjering, who was also the general contractor. Built in the former industrial quarter of Belgrade, the urban renewal project combines modern architecture with 19th century historical structures.
“The Novi Dorćol complex stands at the site of Serbia’s first textile manufacturer, the Aleksa Obradović & Co., founded in the late 19th century to produce hemp and cotton fabrics,” explains Theodor Mentzikofakis, Managing Director of Penetron Hellas. “After the Second World War it was replaced by an elevator manufacturer named after David Pajić Daka, a war hero.”
Large-Scale Urban Renewal
When completed, the Novi Dorćol project will comprise over 500 modern residential units, available as studios, or one- to four-bedroom apartments. Amenities include a swimming pool and spa, restaurants, children’s nursery, playrooms, and many services and retail outlets. The complex’s retail areas are located on the ground floor throughout the Novi Dorćol, covering 20,200 m2 (222,200 ft2) – and surrounded by over 4,000 m2 (44,000 ft2) of landscaped green areas. In total, there are 100,000 m2 (1,100,000 ft2) of space spread across eight above-ground floors. Underneath the Novi Dorćol buildings is a two-floor underground garage with room for more than 700 automobiles.
Because of the proximity of the construction site to the Danube River – and the resulting high groundwater levels – the contractor required a robust waterproofing solution for the below-grade concrete structures, mainly the underground parking garage. The local representatives from Penetron Hellas worked together with Lafarge, the project’s concrete supplier, to provide a concrete mix that would provide the needed protection from the hydrostatic pressure of the groundwater levels.
Penetron System Protects Underground Structures
Lafarge mixed PENETRON ADMIX into approximately 8,000 m3 (10,500 yd3) of concrete mix, which was used for the first phase of construction of the foundation slab and basement retaining walls at Novi Dorćol. PENETRON ADMIX is easily added to the concrete during the batching phase. The active ingredients in the admixture react with moisture to form insoluble crystals that self-heal and seal all micro-cracks, pores, and capillaries in the concrete, becoming an integral part of the matrix. This makes the concrete impermeable for the service life of the structure.
Over five kilometers of PENEBAR SW swellable waterstop strips were installed to permanently seal the construction joints. Last but not least, the entire Penetron Repair System (PENETRON, PENECRETE MORTAR, and PENEPLUG) was utilized to complete the extensive repair work required to reinstate the waterproofing capabilities of the existing retaining walls.